I said, “Plant the good seeds of righteousness, and you will harvest a crop of love. Plow up the hard ground of your hearts, for now is the time to seek the Lord, that he may come and shower righteousness upon you.” Hosea 10:12
I grew up in Indiana, went to college in Michigan, and spent over 15 years in Illinois. When it comes to planting soy beans and corn, you have to start with plowing the soil. This is because there is so much clay in the soil that it becomes as hard as cement. If you were to plant seed in the Spring without plowing the soil, it would never germinate and there would be no harvest in the Fall.
And so it is with the human heart. Our hearts become hardened by bad decisions, misbeliefs, and the arrows of emotional trauma that come from things like rejection, isolation, loss, and abuse. Only God can break up the hard soil of your heart and plant the seeds of righteousness that Hosea writes about. But how do you plow the heart and where do you get the seeds of righteousness?
I have found prayer and meditation on His Word to be the most effective way to plow my heart. Without prayer, the Bible is just literature. But with prayer, the Author of the Bible interprets it for my life today! The Bible then becomes a living and powerful tool to change my thoughts and behaviors. Paul says it this way in Hebrews 4:12, “For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires.” When I pray the Word of God, open my mind to His thoughts, and seek His will, then my thoughts and desires are “exposed.” That describes plowing! It is just like the farmer that exposes the soil to the sun and rain. Plowing the heart with God’s Word through prayer exposes the heart to the light of the Son and the rain of the Holy Spirit. It can be disruptive to my plans and desires. It can be unsettling to discover that my thoughts and actions have been wrong when I thought they were right. But that’s the point of plowing – disrupt the soil to prepare it for a harvest that could otherwise never occur.
The harvest of the heart is what we are all seeking in life – LOVE! We all seek to be loved and to love. There is no greater need of the human heart than love. But our hearts have been hardened due to a lack of love. When I plow my heart each morning by submitting to Jesus and reading His Word, God plants the seeds of His Word in my heart resulting in a harvest of love. And it all happens because I was willing to be disrupted. I was willing to allow Him to change my thoughts and beliefs and desires. It happens when I let Him plow my heart. It can be painful for sure. But the harvest of love is worth it.